Formula 2 Championship leader Nyck de Vries extended his advantage in the points standings by claiming pole position for Saturday’s Feature Race at the Red Bull Ring.

The ART Grand Prix driver picked up four bonus points to extend his advantage over DAMS’ Nicholas Latifi – who qualified sixth-fastest – to 16 points. De Vries qualified ahead of rookie duo Anthoine Hubert (BWT Arden) and Guan Yu Zhou (UNI-Virtuosi), with Hubert setting his fastest lap time during a lull in the session where most of the field typically stays in the pits ahead of their final run.

Latifi’s teammate and Paul Ricard pole-sitter Sérgio Sette Câmara was the early pace-setter when qualifying got underway, but the Brazilian was soon eclipsed by de Vries who posted a 1:14.233 to claim provisional pole. Zhou’s teammate Luca Ghiotto slotted into second, with Latifi moving into third.

The field headed back to the pits to change tyres ahead of a second and final run, with Hubert being the exception. The France Sprint Race winner opted to stay out and take advantage of an empty track; the gamble appeared to pay off as he leapt into P2 with a time just 0.076 seconds slower than than de Vries.

The French youngster returned to the pits and faced a nervous wait to see if he would be shuffled down the order. While de Vries was able to narrowly improve his time and claim pole position, it was his chief rival Latifi who fell down the order after failing to manage a clear lap. The Canadian ran wide at Turn 8 and found himself bumped by Zhou, Nobuharu Matsushita and Ghiotto in the final reckoning.

PREMA’s Mick Schumacher qualified seventh-fastest and will be hoping he can put an end to his six-race streak of failing to claim a points’ finish; the German lines up ahead of Carlin’s Louis Delétraz, Sette Câmara and Callum Ilott (Sauber Junior Team).

2019 FIA Formula 2 Championship – Austria Qualifying Results
Driver Team / Entry Time Gap
1. Nyck de Vries ART Grand Prix 1:14.143
2. Anthoine Hubert BWT Arden 1:14.309 + 0.166
3. Guan Yu Zhou UNI Virtuosi Racing UNI-Virtuosi Racing 1:14.371 + 0.228
4. Nobuharu Matsushita Carlin Motorsport 1:14.399 + 0.256
5. Luca Ghiotto UNI Virtuosi Racing UNI-Virtuosi Racing 1:14.429 + 0.286
6. Nicholas Latifi DAMS 1:14.483 + 0.340
7. Mick Schumacher de Prema Racing 1:14.488 + 0.345
8. Louis Delétraz Carlin Motorsport 1:14.625 + 0.482
9. Sérgio Sette Câmara DAMS 1:14.709 + 0.566
10. Callum Ilott Sauber Junior Team by Charouz 1:14.755 + 0.612
11. Sean Gelael Prema Racing 1:14.808 + 0.665
12. Nikita Mazepin ART Grand Prix 1:14.882 + 0.739
13. Juan Manuel Correa Sauber Junior Team by Charouz 1:14.887 + 0.744
14. Jack Aitken Campos Racing 1:14.986 + 0.843
15. Jordan King MP Motorsport 1:15.139 + 0.996
16. Giuliano Alesi Trident Racing 1:15.212 + 1.069
17. Patricio O’Ward MP Motorsport 1:15.327 + 1.184
18. Arjun Maini Campos Racing 1:15.363 + 1.220
19. Ryan Tveter Trident Racing 1:15.435 + 1.292
20. Tatiana Calderón BWT Arden 1:16.164 + 2.021

Post-Qualifying Penalties:

  • None.

Images via FIA Formula 2 Championship

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Geoff Burke

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